As a small business owner, providing customers and clients with the best experience possible is one of your primary objectives. You understand that it’s critical to your success to meet and exceed customers needs, and it’s what differentiates you from other local competitors and makes your business stand out.
And as an employer, you want your employees to be productive and have the tools they need to get the job done, the best they can, in the least amount of time.
Providing both employees and customers with fast, reliable WiFi meets each of the needs and more, and can create a competitive advantage for your small business.
Consider these four significant benefits of getting or upgrading WiFi for your business today.
1. Increase Customer Satisfaction
Customers view WiFi access at your business as a necessity. It’s transformed from a perk into an expectation. Particularly in the hospitality industry, lack of WiFi access is a major dealbreaker when customers are booking a hotel or looking for a cafe to visit. For while-you-wait service providers (such as auto mechanics) or other by-appointment businesses (like doctor’s offices, salons, and legal practices), WiFi makes wait times seem shorter and even help make your customers more comfortable if there are unforeseen delays.
Customers can do the product research in-store that they’re going to do at home anyway, which lets them feel more confident about their purchasing decisions. Customer WiFi lets you create some new branding and marketing opportunities with a branded customer portal to deliver coupons, news, customized recommendations, loyalty rewards, or even (as Starbucks does) curated music playlists. Along the way, you can collect customer email addresses and data to help you make smarter decisions.
More than merely meeting a common customer expectation, in-store wireless internet access is important because it helps you to connect with your customers, promoting your brand and engaging with them directly. An app providing customers with benefits like a map to products they’re interested in, location-based coupons, or curated recommendations can make for a more personal, meaningful customer experience.
Additionally, as Matt Allpress notes in “The Connected Customer Is Always Right,” WiFi creates opportunities for customers to post pictures or testimonials about their experience to their social networks. You get “free promotion for your business across various social media outlets” and social proof that can influence potential customers’ future decision-making. Securing your customer-facing wireless connection is easier than ever before. Set up a separate access for customers with a Service Set Identifier (SSID) access point, and you’re on your way to providing great WiFi while keeping your business information safe.
2. Promote Productivity
Great WiFi is all about increasing productivity. Cloud-based apps make it possible to get work done from just about anywhere and collaborate with partners around the world. The cloud enables you to back up your data securely so you can still access it from anywhere, no matter what happens. These tools can consolidate and streamline your workflow, and because they run on the web they don’t require any installation time.
Another option is to use WiFi to overhaul your telephone system. Voice over IP (VoIP) and other internet-based communication technologies let you effortlessly route and reroute calls, even if a key member of your team is on the go. They scale up easily for growth, or you can leverage them to take advantage of a distributed team. In case something goes wrong, they offer a high level of redundancy to keep you connected to your customers.
Business-grade WiFi is the backbone of all of these technologies, so you need a solid network to support them.
3. Boost Employee Satisfaction
One of the best ways to keep employees motivated and engaged is to put them in a position to succeed. You want your team to feel like you’re taking care of them, and if you’ve ever sat staring at a loading screen then you know what a difference a good WiFi connection makes for your productivity (and your mood). You want to get work done, not be sitting around waiting to even get started. Help your employees do their jobs better (and with less frustration) with a speedy and reliable WiFi connection.
A wireless network also frees up your team to find the best space for them to focus, whether that’s a quieter space down the hall or the bustling coffee shop next door. By allowing each employee to find an environment that best suits him or her at a particular time (and with cloud-based collaboration tools, that environment might be home), you increase productivity and employee satisfaction.
4. Improve Profits
All of the above business benefits come hand-in-hand with WiFi. You don’t need expensive equipment or to spend hours to get something up and running to benefit from a great business network. Business WiFi is a smart investment that comes with a significant ROI.
Choose a WiFi Provider For Your Business Today
Convinced WiFi is the way to go? Here are some questions to consider to evaluate your usage needs.
- What is your budget for internet access?
- What is your current internet setup?
- Will you be offering customers access or WiFi for employees only?
- How many users are likely to be using wireless internet at once?
- Will other, non-computing equipment such as a phone system be connected to the WiFi as well?
- Will you need email accounts, security, and similar solutions?
The answers to these questions will help your provider meet your needs as effectively as possible.